2002 WRX - Engine Running Very Rough/Low Pressure - Done For?
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This is a discussion on 2002 WRX - Engine Running Very Rough/Low Pressure - Done For? within the General Maintenance, Troubleshooting & Accidents. forums, part of the Tech & Modifying & General Repairs category; 2002 Subaru WRX Hatchback Hey I'm new to the forum but could use a little help. I was driving the ...

  1. #1
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    Jan 2013

    2002 WRX - Engine Running Very Rough/Low Pressure - Done For?

    2002 Subaru WRX Hatchback

    Hey I'm new to the forum but could use a little help. I was driving the car and everything was normal, but then she started running real rough, nothing abrupt, but I hadn't noticed anything the previous day.

    She definitely isn't firing on all 4 cylinders, white smoke out the tail pipe, but only sometimes, fluid levels look good, and this is gonna sound weird, but an occasional *chirp* sound from the tail pipe every 10-15 seconds, again only sometimes.

    I changed all the spark plugs (but didn't verify correct spacing) because that's what worked the other year. The two drivers side were good, the two on the passenger side were fouled. I replaced them, the car ran normal again for about 15-20 seconds then back to running rough as before.

    So here's the meat: I got a guy to look at the car and he performed pressure and leak tests on one cylinder for each side of the engine:
    Side 1- Pressure: 105 Hot, 90 Cold - Leak 26%
    Side 2- Pressure: 105 Hot, 90 Cold - Leak 10%

    He also found a potential culprit, a big gash in the deteriorating rubber coupling at the intake to the turbo. The mechanic is thinking this is the cause, dirty air into turbo and engine causing engine damage, RIP car (not worth rebuild at this time)

    I'm not a mechanic and don't have a lot of experience, but just wondering a couple of things. Wouldn't unfiltered air cause only gradual damage to the engine? This problem occurred rather quickly and power was fine prior to this issue. This wouldn't be a gasket issue b/c pressure is equal in both cylinders, right?

    I'm just having a hard time letting go of this car because I don't quite understand exactly what is wrong with the engine. Any help in reading into this would be appreciated. Thanks!

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  3. #2
    Super Moderator (Actually a SuperSpy) SD_GR's Avatar
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    Jul 2002
    CA, US
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    2002 WRX - Engine Running Very Rough/Low Pressure - Done For?

    If you are describing a gash in the turbo inlet the immediate issue won't be air filtration but quantity entering vs. quantity measured.
    The world breaks everyone and afterward many are strong in the broken places. But those that will not break it kills. It kills the very good and the very gentle and the very brave impartially. If you are none of these you can be sure it will kill you too but there will be no special hurry. Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms, 1929
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  4. #3
    Registered User MOTION's Avatar
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    Oct 2011
    Mandeville, La.
    Fix the coupling.

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